ESPN HistorySportsCenter

THE LINEUP: A dozen ESPN artifacts you wish you had in your man cave

Ken Boudreau is ESPN’s senior director of media technologies and engineering. He also helps preserve valuable items from ESPN’s and ABC Sports’ history. Here, Ken provides a guided tour of some of the artifacts.

1. Original SportsCenter set panels

Two of the original three panels located opposite the SportsCenter desk when the show launched in 1979.


(Hannah Worster/ESPN)
(Hannah Worster/ESPN)

2. Original 2-Inch tape from first SportsCenter on Sept. 7, 1979


(Hannah Worster/ESPN)
(Hannah Worster/ESPN)

3. ESPN blueprints

Upper left: Artist rendering of a past NFL set.
Upper right and lower left: Preliminary drawing of ESPN’s second building. Plans included an expanded tape library and a racquetball court.
Lower right: Land survey of ESPN property from the early 1980’s.


(Hannah Worster/ESPN)
(Hannah Worster/ESPN)

4. ESPN/ABC signage through the years


(Hannah Worster/ESPN)
(Hannah Worster/ESPN)

5. Schwem lens

Equipped with a gyroscope, this lens was used for ESPN’s coverage of the America’s Cup in Newport, R.I., circa 1980.

(Hannah Worster/ESPN)
(Hannah Worster/ESPN)

6. Tape catalog

This card catalog (inset) was once the filing system used to organize tapes by sport and year. The tape library has now expanded to a 62,000-square foot facility that holds more than 2,000,000 film and tape assets – and is now cataloged digitally!


(Hannah Worster/ESPN)
(Hannah Worster/ESPN)

7. ESPN time capsule

Created in 1994 and opened in 2004, the time capsule includes Michael Jordan’s UNC jersey, a signed cowboy hat from NASCAR driver Richard Petty and boxing gloves from heavyweight Ray Mercer.


(Hannah Worster/ESPN)
(Hannah Worster/ESPN)

8. ABC Sports’ Jim McKay’s blazer

Worn during the 1976 Summer Olympics in Montreal.


(Hannah Worster/ESPN)
(Hannah Worster/ESPN)

9. Ikegami HL-79 used by news and mobile units


(Hannah Worster/ESPN)
(Hannah Worster/ESPN)

10. Microphone flags through the years


(Hannah Worster/ESPN)
(Hannah Worster/ESPN)

11. Vintage ESPN apparel


(Hannah Worster/ESPN)
(Hannah Worster/ESPN)

12. Retired recording equipment


(Hannah Worster/ESPN)
(Hannah Worster/ESPN)

David Scott and Liz Carpino contributed to this post

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